Jeanneau One Design : Brave Hendrik

Hello Darius,
You’ve asked me to give a brief history about the Brave Hendrik.

Some 12 years ago I have sold my 37ft Dutch Sloop Breehorn 37. This was a displacement yacht designed by Dick Koopmans. During the winter Sebastiaan then 12 years old, woke me up on a Sunday morning and said to me: hey daddy there is a report of a race on the tele. Great pictures showed up on the screen with 30 odd JOD 35’s sailing the ‘Tour de France a la

Voile’. I was instantly impressed by the power of the big mainsail and the teams with 7 persons whom raced short tracks. Specially under spinnaker there were amazing pictures.

During the after summer we were looking for a boat and noticed that there was a JOD 35 for sale in the Southern part of Holland. We drove to the Yacht Broker with the whole family and were more then enthusiast. As I wanted to buy the boat from the owner and not from a broker, it took till early January when we bought from the Belgian owner. They have sailed ‘Sailing Team’ at the Belgian Coast from Nieuwpoort. I believe the owner made a trip with his partner to the Azores in his Student time. The boat, then, was used as a boat for creating ‘Team Building’ The biggest in the fleet of 15 JOD’s 24 (?).
The Belgians were so friendly as to sail the boat to its berth in Nijkerk.
One of the reasons I wanted a JOD in stead of an X99 for example, was: The mast of the JOD is reasonably stiff. And I wanted to install an installation where we could drop the topmast section for 3 ½ mtrs. Thus enabling to sail ‘Brave Hendrik’ from our residential town through 2 lower bridges of 12:80 mtrs.
My father in law arranged the ‘mastdrop’ installation, and I must say it worked wonderful for us. Only taking not more than 3 minutes to drop mainsail, dip the mast and put it back again, even under spinnaker.

After a couple of years we got a berth in ‘lelystad’ which is directly on the Ijsselmeer. We had to wait for 8 years before we could get this berth.

Lots of weekends and holidays followed. I preferred sailing with my wife Trudie, Sebastiaan my son and Leonieke my daughter. Although we were a little under-equipped as far as the weight concerned, we solved this by roping the sailwardrobe, reserve diesel and reserve drinking water on the deck. Thus having as much weight as possible on the upwind board.

The name giving
Brave Hendrik is called after my father Hendrik Zuiddam (died 12 yrs ago). He was the son of a barge owner and was born on my grandfathers barge. I had a lot of respect for the sailing capabilities of my father. He was never afraid on sea and had  a great deal of adventures. Especially when he was the captain of a barge in 1940 when being bombed in Rotterdam harbor.
Anyway, I experienced with him 1 time when it was closed of fog and he directed the boat (without compass) over a course of 5 miles directly into the harbor. I still cannot believe this.
Brave is both a Dutch word and an English word. I mean the English word ‘Brave’.

Sailing the boat was a dream.
Only on the mainsail you can reach already reasonable speed.
So after a while we learned how to trim the mast and sails and learned that even with 4 people to sail unreefed up to 23 knts. Downwind being a ‘piece of cake’ Except one time when we sailed from Boulogne (Fr.) to Dieppe, downwind in ever stronger winds. We broached a couple of times but reached a maximum of 18 miles on GPS with fock and mainsail with 1 reef.
When we arrived at Dieppe it was about 23:00hrs and becoming dark. Nevertheless the people on the pier applauded, because found it more then spectacular how we surfed into the harbor.

One of the reasons we like sailing light displacement boats is, that you can start sailing already from 6 knts wind. This enabled us to make daytrips without using the engine.

Holiday trips followed to the German Islands, England (up to Lands end), France.
The last couple of years, when we sailed the boat only with 2, we took it easy around the Belgian, Dutch and German waters .

Although I raced dinghy’s (OK-jol, Europe, Laser) from age of 14 and later a whole fleet of keelyachts I only had a few races with the JOD. To be honest: I never booked any good result with the JOD. This was not due to the boat but more in finding the right 7 man crew. It would have been great fun creating a team.

When first sailing the boat with its relatively big mainsail, it caused some time to find out how she reacts. Learning to have a man permanently on the traveler it was the solution preventing from many break-outs.

Up to a couple of years ago we were doubting weather to keep the boat or not.
We decided to keep the boat and make it more convenient to sail shorthanded.
As it was time to overhaul the boat first, we had her painted in clear red. Before she was white. Further we planned a furling jib and the main changed with 3 reefs. Unfortunately Trudie was diagnosed a neurological problem, which keeps us from further sailing now.

Although there are many new designs which perform better than this almost 20 year old design, I believe she is a strong boat and one of the first in her generation of ultra light displacement boats. A good one still to race and safely cruise with the family. Well maintained I am sure you can sail her for many more years.
Darius, I wish you will have as many happy years with the ‘Brave Hendrik’ as I have enjoyed her with my family.

Happy Sailing.!
ser Zuiddam


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